Gil Noble, host of award-winning Sunday morning public affairs program Like It Is, passed away on Thursday from complications related to a stroke he had last summer, according to the New York Times. He was 80.
Noble, whose career in television news and programming spanned over five decades, joined WABC-TV as a reporter in July 1967, and was named anchor of the station’s Saturday and Sunday night newscasts in January 1968. The opportunity to host Like It Is came later that year.
In the midst of racial turmoil, Noble hosted a show dedicated to providing a more encompassing picture of the African-American experience. Like It Is featured national and international guests on its programs and documentaries, including international leaders like Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe and former South African President Nelson Mandela; entertainers such as Bob Marley, Lena Horne and Harry Belafonte; and political notables like Louis Farrakhan and Chicago Mayor Harold Washington.
“His contributions are a part of history and will be remembered for years to come,” said WABC-TV President and General Manager Dave Davis. “Today, our hearts are with Gil’s family, his wife Jean and their five children, and we thank them for so lovingly sharing him with the world all these years.”
The seasoned journalist received over 650 community awards and numerous industry accolades, ranging from seven Emmys to a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Association of Black Journalists.